Possible explosive device forces evacuation of DeKalb County courthouseDeKalb County Sheriff's Office Chief Randy Akies gives an update on the evacuation of the DeKalb County courthouse in downtown Decatur on Thursday, May 27. Photo by Zoe Seiler.
This story has been updated.
Decatur, GA — A possible explosive device forced the evacuation of the DeKalb County courthouse in downtown Decatur on Thursday, May 27.
A helicopter was circling the area and West Trinity Place was shut down between Commerce Drive and Church Street, and North McDonough Street was shut down between West Howard Avenue and West Trinity Place, according to Decatur Police.
The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office said, “The DeKalb Sheriff’s Office is conducting an emergency evacuation of the DeKalb County courthouse in downtown Decatur out of an abundance of caution after learning of the possible presence of an explosive device on the premises. Both the Decatur Police and DeKalb County Police are involved in the coordinated effort with the sheriff’s office to locate the device. All courthouse occupants are being moved to outside locations, as designated by the sheriff’s office contingency plan for emergencies.”
The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, Decatur Police Department and the Marshall’s office worked together to quickly and safely evacuate the courthouse, DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office Chief Randy Akies said.
The law enforcement officers were in the process of sweeping inside and outside the courthouse around 1:30 p.m. and completed the sweep around 1:50 p.m. The staging areas were released and employees and others began entering the courthouse again just before 2 p.m.
Staging areas were set up on the Decatur Square, in the Chick-fil-A parking lot on East Trinity Place and in the Chipotle parking lot on West Ponce de Leon Avenue, Akies said. The threat was not severe enough to where police needed everyone to evacuate the Decatur Square and surrounding areas.
MARTA buses were temporarily rerouted away from the Decatur station but all bus routes have resumed normal service.
Police did not find an immediate threat at the scene, Akies said.
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